The Daily Item, Sunbury, PA

January 11, 2013

60 hunker down at courthouse

Snyder County threat sparks 20-min. lockdown

By Marcia Moore
The Daily Item

MIDDLEBURG — An alleged threat called into the Snyder County 911 Center Friday afternoon prompted a brief lockdown of the courthouse in Middleburg.

County Clerk Lee Knepp said he received a call from Middleburg Police Chief Tony Jordan at about 2:45 p.m., informing him of the potential threat and advising the building be locked and no one be allowed to enter or leave.

Security officer Bernard Levy locked the main entrance and minutes later Sheriff Joseph Reigle Jr. was standing at the door.

Details were sketchy, but Reigle said it appears the threat may have come from one of the parties involved in a protection-from-abuse petition that was heard earlier in the day by Senior Judge Harold F. Woelfel Jr.

Woelfel left his upper story office at about 3:05 p.m. to inquire what was going on after Knepp sent an email to all the offices alerting employees of the situation.

About 60 people work in the courthouse and all responded calmly, Knepp said. He could not recall the building ever being locked due to a threat.

Employees in first floor offices shut off the lights and closed the blinds during the 20-minute lockdown.